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£4.5bn bonanza promised for East End by 2012 Olympics boss

PUBLISHED: 22:05 11 July 2008 | UPDATED: 13:26 05 October 2010

MOST of the £6 billion being ploughed into the 2012 Games is paying for East London’s permanent regeneration, Olympics chiefs assured this week. The Delivery authority responsible for setting up the Games at Stratford estimates 75p-in-the-£1 they’re spending from the public coffers is being invested in long-term projects. The Games themselves were therefore costing £1.5bn, it was suggested

Mike Brooke

MOST of the £6 billion being ploughed into the 2012 Games is paying for East London's permanent regeneration, Olympics chiefs assured this week.

The Delivery authority responsible for setting up the Games at Stratford estimates 75p-in-the-£1 they're spending from the public coffers is being invested in long-term projects.

The Games themselves were therefore costing £1.5bn, it was suggested.

The process was already beginning, the authority's chairman John Armitt told Wednesday evening's Foundation for Science and Technology debate held in London.

"The legacy after the Olympics was at the heart of London's 2012 bid and remains firmly at the heart of the project today," he said.

"We are investing 75p in every £ in long-term regeneration."

He added: "But further investment in this area is not coming just from the public sector.

"The 'green light' was given last week on the £1.5bn retail-led Stratford City development next to the Olympic Park.

"This underlines how the Games are acting as a catalyst for changing East London."

The first phase of regeneration is creating the Olympic Park, a two-mile swathe of land from Stratford to Hackney Wick on what was formerly a massive industrial wasteland.

The Delivery authority chairman listed five major projects being set up through hosting the Olympics which will benefit East London afterwards.

These included clearing the contaminated wasteland to create the largest new urban park in Europe for 150 years, a world-class sports venues for the community afterwards.

There are 30 permanent bridges and 15 miles of roads being laid out that will link areas like Stratford, Hackney Wick, Old Ford and Bromley-by-Bow across the River Lea and Bow Back Rivers.

A half-mile tunnel has also been completed beneath the Lea, ready to switch to underground power cables to replace unsightly overhead electricity pylons across Hackney Marshes which are said to have been hindering regeneration for years.

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